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I am a criminal defense lawyer practicing in Rhode Island.  I handle all types of criminal cases, including, DUI, domestic violence cases, drug case, sex cases just to name a view. 

Friday, January 16, 2015

Update on new Rhode Island DUI law.

NEW RHODE ISLAND DUI LAW UPDATE 


On January 1, 2015, Rhode Island General Law §31-27-2  Driving Under Influence of Liquor or Drugs came into effect.  Since the date the law came into effect, it has become clear that there is much confusion with respect to what the new Rhode Island DUI and refusal law penalties hold. It is important that all attorneys practicing criminal defense read and understand this new law.   Over the last week, many attorneys have asked me what the new penalties are under the new Rhode Island DUI and Refusal law.  Let's be clear: the new DUI law lowers the minimum penalty for a Rhode Island DUI as long as the defendant is able to have an interlock system installed in their automobile. In addition, the law also allows for a defendant to be granted a work license as part of their disposition during the time of their minimum suspension.  This work license will be valid for 12 hours a day for the sole purpose of work.   I have seen many of the attorneys and even some judges have some confusion in determining what the new law allows.

NEW RHODE ISLAND DUI PENALTIES WITH INTERLOCK


If you are charged with a first offense refusal in Rhode Island, the minimum penalty can be reduced from 6 months to 30 days, as long as the person is ordered to have a interlock device on their automobile for a period of 6 months to 2 years.  If you are ordered to have an interlock device, then you can apply for a hardship license.

Any person with a DUI with no alcohol readings or a .01-.15 reading may have their license suspension reduced from a minimum of 90 days to 30 days, as long as they have an interlock system installed on their automobile for a period of 3 months to 1 year.  This will also allow them to apply  to have a hardship license for the 30 days.

Any person with a first offense with a reading between .08 and .1 will still have a minimum suspension of 30 days, but with the installation of the interlock system from 3 months to 1 year will be eligible for a hardship license.

Any person with reading of over .15, can have a reduction in their sentence to 30 days but must  have and interlock system in their automobile for 6 months  to 2 years.  They also may be eligible for a hardship license.

OVERVIEW OF INTERLOCK VS.  NO INTERLOCK

 

FIRST OFFENSE DUI OR REFUSAL


First offense DUI with reading of  over .08
With interlock                                                     Without interlock
Minimum 30 day loss of license,                          Minimum 30 day loss of license
May get hardship license                                       No hardship license
Interlock 3 months to 1 year


First offense DUI with reading of  over .10 to .15 or no reading.

With interlock                                                      Without interlock
Minimum 30 day loss of license,                           Minimum 90 day loss of license
May get hardship license                                        No hardship license
Interlock 3 months to 1 year 

First offense DUI with reading of  over .15
With interlock                                                      Must get interlock if over .15
Minimum 30 day loss of license,                
May get hardship license
Interlock 3 months to 1 year

First offense refusal
With interlock                                                     Without interlock
Minimum 30 day loss of license,                           Minimum 6 month loss of license
May get hardship license                                       No hardship license
Interlock 6 months to 2 years




SECOND OFFENSE DUI OR REFUSAL WITHIN 5 YEARS

All second DUI or refusal offenses must have a interlock

Second offense DUI with reading of  over .08 to .15 or no reading.

With interlock                                                    
Minimum 45 day loss of license,                          
May get hardship license
Interlock 6 months to 2 year                                      

Second offense DUI with reading of  over .15
With interlock                                                    
Minimum 45 day loss of license,                        
May get hardship license
Interlock 6 months to 2 years 
 

Second offense refusal
With interlock                                              
Minimum 60 day loss of license,                       
No hardship license                                     
Interlock 1 year to 4 years 

As you can see, there are many benefits to the newly enacted law.  In order to take advantage of these benefits, you must be sure to hire an experienced DUI Criminal Lawyer if you have been charged with DUI or Refusal in the State of Rhode Island.  I have been asked by many attorneys to clarify and interpret this law because of my extensive experience as a Criminal Lawyer who has defended many DUI and Refusal cases.  Please contact me to discuss your case and to determine the best strategy to defend your DUI or Refusal case and to determine how to take advantage of the benefits in the newly enacted penalties.
 
The law Office of Michael J. Zarrella has been helping people with their DUI and refusal cases for 20 years.  If you been arrested for DUI or refusal in Rhode Island  call him now at 523-5271 or email him at Mjzarrella@gmail.com.

For more information please review his websites at www.rhodeislanddefenselawyer.com or  www.ridrunkdrivingattorney.com.

               

              





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